Parliamentary diplomacy can fill gap in Russian-Ukrainian relations

Photo: Parliamentary diplomacy can fill gap in Russian-Ukrainian relations / Politics

Baku, Azerbaijan, April 16

By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:

OSCE and other organizations are trying to solve the Ukrainian conflict, President of OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, Ranko Krivokapic told journalists on April 16.

Krivokapic, who is on a visit to Baku, said a meeting with participation of Russian and Ukrainian MPs was held last week.

"This was the first contact between Russian and Ukrainian MPs. During this meeting, we discussed the important issues related to Ukraine and Crimea. OSCE's position on this issue is clear. We support Ukraine's territorial integrity. I believe that the parliamentary diplomacy can play an important role in the settlement of the conflict," the president of OSCE PA said.

Krivokapic believes that the parliamentary diplomacy can fill the gap in Russian-Ukrainian relations.

"We are concerned about the developments in Ukraine and this showed that we should work hard on our principles," OSCE PA president added.

A change of power took place in Ukraine on February 22.

The Verkhovna Rada (parliament) of Ukraine ousted President Viktor Yanukovych from the power, changed the constitution and scheduled presidential elections for May 25.

Yanukovych said he was forced to leave Ukraine under the threat of violence, and he remains the legally elected head of state.

A number of provinces in eastern and southern Ukraine, as well as the Crimea did not recognize the legitimacy of the Rada and decided on possibility of holding a referendum on the future fate of the regions.

The vast majority of residents of Crimea - 96 percent - voted to secede from Ukraine and join Russia, in a referendum held March 16.

With the exception of Russia most countries refused to recognize the referendum and its results.

Russia and Crimea signed an agreement on March 18 on Crimea as well as Sevastopol city joining the Russian Federation.

Translated by L.Z.

Edited by C.N.

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